After a Covid-induced gap of two years, class 10 examinations began across Telangana on Monday.
More than 5 lakh students are appearing in the the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exams at 2,861 centres.
The state's education department made elaborate arrangements for conducting the exams in a smooth manner.
For the last two years, SSC exams could not be conducted due to Covid-19 pandemic.
In 2020, the exams were postponed after three papers were held as a nationwide lockdown was imposed. The exams were subsequently cancelled and all the students were declared passed.
Last year, the exams had to be cancelled due to the second wave of the pandemic and all the students were promoted to the next class.
Schools remained closed for most part of the academic year. Classes were mostly held online as parents were reluctant to send their children for physical classes.
However, the authorities decided to conduct exams this year as it was felt that not doing so would affect the future of the students.
However, the syllabus was truncated and the number of papers reduced from 11 to just six to take the exam pressure off of students.
Candidates will be given a choice of answering only 50 per cent of the questions in the theory section while all objective-type questions have to be answered.
The Board of Secondary School of Education also extended the exam time by 30 minutes.
All the exams will be held from 9.30 a.m. to 12.45 p.m. Students were given a five-minute grace time to reach the centres.
As the authorities had made it clear that candidates will not be allowed after 9.35 a.m., the students had reached the centres well before the time on Monday, when the exam for the first language was conducted.
The exams are being held with Covid-19 guidelines. The candidates have been asked to wear a face mask while they will be allowed into the centres after checking their body temperature.
In view of the summer season, authorities have made provision for drinking water and ORS packets at the exam centres. ANMs and Asha workers were also kept on stand-by by with required medicines.
A total of 5,09,275 students from 11,401 schools have applied for the exams. They include 2,51,177 girls.
A total 140 flying squads have been constituted across the state to check malpractices. CCTV cameras have also been installed at the centres.